GE Capital: Positive Trends in RV, Motorsport, Marine Sectors
GE Capital’s Commercial Distribution Finance (CDF) business said it has seen positive trends in the Canadian marine, motorsports and recreational vehicle (RV) industries through the first half of the year. It expects favorable conditions to continue into 2014.
CDF found that dealers’ inventory orders were up in all three categories. Aging of inventory has dropped in motorsports and marine, while staying flat year-over-year in RVs.
“Cool weather in May and June resulted in a late start to the already short Canadian selling season but, surprisingly, liquidations are only slightly below last year’s levels,” said Howard Shiebler, president and CEO of CDF in Canada. “Overall, the macro-economic environment has stabilized and the Canadian economy continues to respond favorably.”
As a result of its longstanding position as the leading inventory financing provider to Canadian manufacturers and distributors and their dealers, CDF periodically provides market intelligence that may help companies throughout the supply chain manage their businesses.
A 17% increase over last year’s marine industry volume is within striking distance of pre-downturn figures nationwide. There has been considerable growth year-over-year in the prairies and in the Atlantic region, although Ontario and Quebec still account for the most volume by province.
“We saw a lot of excitement at last year’s boat shows,” Shiebler noted. “Canadian marine dealers continued to fill orders from those shows into the first half of this year.”
This strong performance can be seen in inventory aging levels, as well; the national level of inventory aged one year or more has decreased to nearly 16% from just below 19% in 2012.
A six percent increase in wholesale shipments of motorsports products through the first half of 2013 was driven largely by the Atlantic region and the west, up 18% and 11% respectively. Quebec increased by five percent, while Ontario and the prairies both showed decreases of one percent.
The national level of inventory over one year old has decreased to about 12.5% from last year’s already healthy rate of 15.5%.
“We know that weather conditions can have an extraordinary impact on dealers so we’re working with those who’ve been impacted by the severe flooding in southern Alberta,” Shiebler said. “We want to do our part to foster a strong Canadian motorsports industry.”
The RV industry’s nine percent increase in wholesale volume shows that dealers are effectively selling through any product they had remaining in inventory from 2012. It also reflects continued strong consumer demand.
So far this year, these growth figures are being driven by the Western provinces, while Ontario and Quebec remain slower markets.
“The country’s inventory aging past the one-year mark has stayed flat year-over-year but we view it as an acceptable level,” noted Shiebler. “Of course, we actively monitor the Canadian market and work collaboratively with our customers to mitigate situations where the levels become a concern.”